With cultural roots dating back thousands of years, the Kazakh people are rich in traditions. From birth through old age and death, every step of their lives has historically been marked with celebration. Even funeral ceremonies have their own special symbolism.

Unfortunately, as was the case throughout many former Soviet territories, many rich and interesting traditions and customs of the Kazakh people were banned, suppressed and ultimately forgotten during Soviet rule. Butas real sovereignty has been reestablished in Kazakhstan, these abandoned traditions are being rediscovered by the Kazakh people – and they are eager to share them with the rest of the world. In Astana and its surrounding area,many memorials, museums and other cultural venues have been established to do so.

Following is a listing of fixed cultural exhibitions and forums to start with. The cultural landscape scene is still developing, as is virtually everything in young Astana. So ask around as new shows and exhibitions frequently come and go. If you are fortunate enough to be here during a national holiday, there will be no shortage of experiences for you to enjoy. Lastly, don’t forget that Astana is a political town with dozens of foreign embassies. At some point,every embassy will host events or sponsor performances promoting their own national cultures. If you do a little digging, planning a day of cultural indulgence in Astana is easy to do.